Tuesday, July 15, 2008

China Trip Tuesday

Today we're going to talk about one of my most favorite things... LAUNDRY! Boy howdy do I enjoy doing laundry. No, really... I do. Honest. My house is pretty much the center of a tornado most days, but you can be guaranteed that all my little pigs are wearing clean, sweet smelling clothes. I do laundry every day. My friend Sergeant SuperMom says she only does laundry once a week. After I quit laughing (remember she has 5 kids) I told her she was from another planet that on the planet I come from we do laundry every day... usually all day. If I'm up and at home... I've probably got a load of laundry going. My laundry is like a baseball game... a load is always at bat and one is always in the on-deck circle and there are many other loads waiting in the dug out for their turn in the washer! So when I knew I was traveling to another country for 16 days and advised to take way less than 16 outfits I was certain I would have to do laundry in China. And it was great! In fact, I could almost get used to it. Let's take a look...

You take your laundry to the store in a bag... we used the hotel laundry bag. In Guangzhou just about every little shop on Shamian Island will do laundry and in Nanchang our guide arranged for laundry pick up... we just bagged it, took it to her room & the laundry service (The Elephant King) brought it back to us & collected their money.

Oooooo... ahhhhh.... neat huh? All the laundry is folded neatly and placed in clear, cellophane bags. I never had anything lost or returned faded or shrunk... (or is it shrunken?)

Here's another view. My only constructive criticism would be for the Chinese to discover DOWNY. I'm used to my clothes smelling oh-so-fresh. The laundry didn't smell bad... just smelled... blah... nada. But hey, it was clean, neat & cheap... I'm a big girl... I can handle 2 weeks w/out Downy.

Now get this... in Nanchang, our laundry service, The Elephant King, sewed the tags in each piece of clothing. Sewed. By hand. See the tiny little knots & the white thread. How unique is that? I was just blown away by the small detail. Some of our travel clothes still have the tags in them 'cause I haven't cut them out. It's a little souvenir. Or maybe I'm just lazy???

For those of you who may be about to travel, here is my suggestion for the type of outfits you should concentrate on when packing.
  1. CREW neck t-shirts. I read this suggestion on Rumor Queen before I traveled and I thought "nah... this round face looks better in V-necks... to heck with that suggestion!" Well, I owe that person an apology. Once you get your baby... you'll be holding and bending and putting her in the carrier & taking her out of the carrier and she'll by climbing on you and pulling on you and sleeping on you and you're better off with full coverage. I bet I showed my boobs to 1/2 of the people of Jiangxi & Guangdong Provinces... not to mention my travel companions! To all of them, I apologize.
  2. A sports bra. Ladies, comfort & practicality are your top priorities. Now granted, I am not well endowed... so there ain't alot of support needed for these little mamas. You'll be doing a lot of walking and riding and it is just more comfortable in a sports bra. It is.
  3. Shorts. I did bring some skirts to China and they were o.k. and cool in the hot summer. But you will be doing a lot of sitting on the floor with your baby & getting on and off buses, airplanes, taxis. Again... practicality... it's key.
  4. And lastly, I'll admit that AGAIN... that I did not heed the suggestions of those that traveled before me and I packed WAY too many clothes for the trip. I should have packed LESS and done laundry more. Now don't you make the same mistake. O.K.?